Case study - Transactions

Preparing for a merger of two large health systems


In an increasingly challenging environment for mergers and acquisitions among health systems, Revive is currently nearing the announcement stages of a merger between two large not-for-profit health systems that do not compete in the same markets.

Defining the narrative first, before others

Given that both of these health systems are high performing, Revive has developed a communications strategy that is focused on defining the narrative, benefits, and rationale for this merger to key audiences before others attempt to define it. This has included the benefits and enhancements that will be possible for employees, physicians, and patients.

A comprehensive rollout and intentional action

Our rollout schedule is highly targeted and highly intentional, notifying key government officials and internal audiences first, before communicating with media and broader external stakeholders. We know how important it is to communicate with internal audiences and encourage them to embrace the benefits of the merger before other outside groups attempt to criticize it. Key media and stakeholders will receive briefings, and patients will receive digital and personalized letters to bolster support for the combined health system.

We have also pushed each health system to approach the announcement through action – showing stakeholders why this merger is different on quality, costs, and community benefits. Without those specifics, stakeholders may parrot back recent research and coverage that has been critical of large mergers.

Prepared and nimble as the conversation evolves

The plan also has contingency plans and flexibility built in to allow for strategy to shift and new tactics to be taken depending on how the conversation evolves following the announcement.

Overall, the goal of the merger announcement is to mitigate concerns on quality, price, and what it means for local communities, and build support prior to the final approval of the merger.